Checkout Girls

Date 23rd January 2020
Society Great Ayton Dramatic Society
Venue Christ Church Hall
Type of Production Play
Director Julie Woolley


Author: Jean Scarlett-Carr

Checkout Girls by Louise Roche is a comedy play telling the tale of the women who work within the local supermarket. As the supermarket prepares to host a singles night, the girls and odd job man unravel their varying love lives. With a cast of 5 ladies and 1 man with extra silent cameo, this performance by Great Ayton Dramatic Society gave a lovely entertaining evening with comedy script interspersed with music, singing and dance.

The set was fixed as the shop that was very nicely created, along with 2 front side scenes, and with use of tabs to separate areas meant the script of 27 short scenes was well staged by the divided areas and split lighting focused areas that allowed the play to flow easily.  Dialogue was Not easily done. mainly audible, set in the local area, and scenes supplemented with music snippets from across the pop eras, often set to dance movements.  Costumes were excellent for the shop branded uniforms.

“Shelly” the timid and put-on checkout lady was played by Avril McCall with nice characterisation and pleasant voice when she blossomed to sing her solo number on the stage that night. Bridget Vamplew as “Pam”, Shelly’s mum, played her role with feeling, and portrayed the agoraphobic mourning middle-aged lady who had to find herself and courage to go out and support her daughter.  Squabbling check out girls “Tammy” and “Shaz”, performed by Lynne Stones and Denise Skinn respectively, had great sassy characters and comedy timing, with lines continually crossing characters that were well delivered and good flowing momentum. A lovely rapport between the ladies giving warmth and friendship, and Denise singing a solo with pleasant voice.  Sian Barnard was “Sylvia” the shop Supervisor who mothers the girls in a nagging yet caring way, whilst having eyes for “Malcolm”, the maintenance man, an awkward yet fatherly soul that was nicely portrayed from Stephen Jones. Lovely characterisation from both and quite the transformations for them as the hosts for the singles night show. Throughout the play comes the voice of “Mr Worley”, the shop Manager, adding some funny comedy moments from his office, and who also appears as the ghost of Pam’s late husband to give a moving dance scene together. Silent cameo part of the visiting stranger was played by Director Julie Woolley adding the intrigue of who is that, with silent visual character only. As a first time director the job was done very. Actors had good role character, script was delivered clearly, and story and actions flowed smoothly.